TBI defined by the people who are living with it ...
BrainLine asked our online community to share their personal definitions of traumatic brain injury, and the list below captures some of the many responses so generously provided by people with TBI.
Every individual’s experience with traumatic brain injury is unique, but there are many common symptoms and emotions. Anger, fear, sadness, and anxiety may be accompanied by difficulties with memory, pain, and the challenges of maintaining relationships.
A puzzle … all the pieces are there but in the wrong order.
When the cursor disappears from your mental computer screen.
Brain fog, confusion, difficulty learning new things, being able to be “high-functioning” but being very slow at it.
An invisible thief.
Devastating. Exhausting. Widely misunderstood.
Scary. I look the same but I feel like someone else.
MIA or AWOL … Missing in Action or Away Without Leaving!
An invisible memory-taker, mood-changer, life-changer!
Like being under a constant waterfall and I’m just trying to catch my breath and not drown!
Thinking with speed bumps.
Like an earthquake in my brain that knocked down bridges and damaged highways and knocked out some —but not all —lines of communication. Some of these things get rebuilt more quickly than others, and some are easily re-damaged.
Like having everything in your life suspended in Jell-O, and just when you reach out for something, the Jell-O gets blended.
A family affair … when a family member has one, it affects everyone.
A constant struggle for the rest of your life … you know how you used to be and you want your life back … but it won't happen … it's like living in thick fog.
Scrambled egg between my ears.
The absolute hardest thing that you can imagine going through!! Unbelievably frustrating and isolating.
Learning to live in a brain that sometimes feels like it belongs to a stranger.
Forgetfulness and a total personality change.
Scary. Frustrating. Annoying. Funny at times … sometimes I feel rather than get frustrated about one of my deficits. It’s better just to laugh about it.
Limiting, difficult, having to “relearn” things you thought you already knew.
Unpredictable and extremely misunderstood.
Like having the flu all day, every day … for the rest of your life.
Trying to catch clouds in a windstorm.
We hope you will share your own definitions in the comments section below, and to join the BrainLine community on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Pinterest.